December baby catching up on field
It was a weekend of personal bests for Tristan McDougall at the recent Legion National Track and Field Championships in Cape Breton, N.S.
The 14-year-old St. Catharines resident was sixth in javelin and eighth in hammer throw and discus, competing against older athletes in the under-16 division.
“They were competitive fields and those were very good results,” said father and Niagara Olympic Club coach Randy McDougall. “He got personal bests in all three events to do that so he has a great weekend.”
It was Tristan’s best-ever results at the nationals.
“I was kind of nervous going in but I had last year as experience so I already knew what was going to happen,” the Grade 10 student at Governor Simcoe said. “My dad was telling me to calm down and just throw because I double faulted in hammer. I was about to triple fault but I kept it in and it was a PB.”
Tristan qualified for Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations championships in the midget boys discus this spring and earlier this summer at the Athletics Ontario championships, he mined silver in the under-16 boys hammer throw, was third in discus and fourth in javelin.
“At the rate he is going and because he is a pretty tall kid, all the muscle will start to come on with the age he is at,” Randy said. “His technique is one of the best out there so now when he catches up physically with the boys he is throwing against, he is just going to jump right on the podium with them in the next year or two.”
Not only was Tristan a 14-year-old competing in the under-16 division, he also has a December birthday.
“I am a December baby and it’s hard to compete with my competitors,” he said.
But that doesn’t mean he’s not setting high goals for himself.
“I am kind of looking for a podium at OFSAA,” he said. “That would be nice because I haven’t got any big medals yet.”
Given his progress, he thinks that is a possibility.
“We’ve been doing new program and every new program he (Randy) gives me, I have been improving at least five metres.”
He loves having his father as a coach.
“It helps a lot,” Tristan said. “It’s great to have my dad as coach because when I get here (track club), I don’t have to wait for a coach. And when I am at home, he can help me do drills and remind me to do them.”
His sister Emma, herself an accomplished thrower, also chips in with needed support.
“In javelin, she gives me tips and that really helps,” he said.
At the national championships, Randy McDougall was selected as a Team Ontario coach, and three other coaches from Niagara Olympic Club, Trevor Moore, Derrick Beach and Sharon Stewart, attended the championships.
The NOC had 11 athletes competing at the event, with several young athletes competing at the national level for the first time. All finished in the top 20 of their events.
Below are the results of the other athletes who competed for the club:
Under-18 boy high jump: 3. Michael Ivanov.
Under-18 boys 800 metres: 5. Eric Campbell.
Under-18 boys 1,500 metres: 15. Campbell.
Under-18 girls high jump: 8. Gwen Cudmore; 9. Ashtynn Caldwell.
Under-18 girls 2,000-metre steeple chase: 15. Nicole Beach, 15th place
Under-18 girls 400 metres: 13. Jaden Delima.
Under-16 girls 1,200 metres: 20. Hayley Morey.
Under-16 girls 2,000 metres: 16. Morey.
Under-16 girls 100 metres: 16. Lauren Thomas.
Under-16 girls 200 metres: 14. Thomas.
Under-16 boys 1,200 metres: 18. Evan Beach.
Under-16 boys 2,000 metres: 12. Evan Beach.
Under-16 boys 100 metres: 15. Zavio Prato
Under-16 boys 200 metres: 16. Prato.
BPSN’s coverage of the track and field season is made possible with the support of the Niagara Olympic Club (https://nocrunners.com).